Opinions of Vatican II Poll

What is your opinion of Vatican II?

I’m still waiting to see what will happen when they finally follow the documents.

From the way I read the poll, I couldn’t tell what you meant by decadence–if you mean society in general, I can pretty much agree that the decrees of the Council were definitely necessary–if you mean in the Church, than I disagree.

The Council was necessary to finish the work of Vatican I and to outline how the Church should re-evangelize a world which saw the first half of the 20th century as the most godless and bloodiest ever.

The Second Vatican Council is actually a plan to evangelize the modern world who had lost their foundation of faith and had brought about the most brutal century the earth had ever seen. The documents were even written for average people to read, not just clerics and theologians.

The Council first defines what the Church is (Lumen Gentium). Then it defines what the word of God is (Dei verbum). Then it provides documents on how the Church in general should spread the word of God, bring people into the Church, and how to prepare its members to accomplish these ends (Gaudium et Spes, Dignitatis Humanae, and the decrees on social communication, ecumenism, interreligious dialogue, the Eastern Churches, the liturgy, Christian education, and the training of priests). Then it provides documents for specific members of the Church outlining how they are to spread the word of God (decrees on bishops, priests, religious, missions, and laity).

It’s very comprehensive. Sadly, very few people follow what the Council said we should do and how we should do it. :frowning:

If everyone actually obeyed the mandates the Council gives to those in their respective states of life, we’d be living in a golden age of the Church. Alas, sinful men never listen and obey–they do what their pride and carnality desires. But sadly, as history shows, Councils are only heeded by the faithful and obedient–of which there is often few. Arianism grew after Nicea, Nestorianism grew after Ephesus, and so forth. Some followed those errors, some left to do it better than the institutional Church, some just lose faith all together…nothing new under sun :frowning:

I think it was a very good thing, but too many people made their own reforms and invoked the name of Vatican II to justify it.

In my view it was the Church’s Munich.

Munich was where Britian offered everything that Hilter asked for to the Germans, in an attempt to avert war.

The first reaction might be that Munich was disaster, but in another sense it was necessary to do that, because it made it crystal clear that the fault for the Second World war lay with Germany and Germany alone.

Similarly at Vatican II the Church offered everything that could possibly be offered to liberals and Protestants. Though there were individual exceptions, generally they did not respond. However the fault is theirs’ alone. There is no way any fair observer can say that the Church did not make massive concessions to try to accomodate them.

It doesn’t really matter what our opinions are. We are to accept the Church with all its councils or we are not Catholics. Liberals are not permitted to pick and choose and neither are conservatives. Otherwise we end up like the Old Roman Catholic Church which left after Vatican I and the doctrine of papal infallibility.

I agree with you there. Also they made a token gesture toward accommodating the Orthodox, though the jury is still out whether they will succeed into bringing them into the fold. The M.P. may be the key here.

To a large extent Catholics can pick and choose. For instance no one, not even Opus Dei, says that you have to join Opus Dei. But you can if you want.

What we can’t do is say “Vatican II, oh I didn’t like that one. I think it shouldn’t apply”. However you can say, to a very large extent “I don’t think it should apply to me” and quite possibly a bishop will dispense from the bits you don’t like. For instance a crusty old monk at a monastery I visited refused flat out to say the NO. So the abbot just let him celebrate the Tridentine Mass on his own whilst everyone else said the NO.

Vatican II did not engage infallibility in the strict sense:

It issued no condemnations.

It did not clarify any doctrines.

If anything it confused more people with vague terminology.

Even Paul VI said it did not engage in the church’s infallibility.

More like a world-wide synod of opinions and pastoral ideas than an ecumenical council.

Pope Paul VI made it clear in a public audience of January 12th, 1966 that the decrees of Vatican II were never stamped with the note of infallibility as he openly declared:

“There are those who ask what authority, what theological qualification, the Council intended to give to its teachings, knowing that it avoided issuing solemn dogmatic definitions backed by the Church’s infallible teaching authority. The answer is known by those who remember the conciliar declaration of March 6, 1964, repeated on November 16, 1964. In view of the pastoral nature of the Council, it avoided proclaiming in an extraordinary manner any dogmas carrying the mark of infallibility.” (General Audience, December 1, 1966, published in the L’Osservatore Romano 1/21/1966)

Catholics are, therefore, within their rights to make reservations regarding any novelties emanating from Vatican II that are out of step with Sacred Tradition and the previous (continuous) Magisterium of the Church. Vatican II unlike previous Church Councils, did not pretend to bolster the faith of the faithful by means of clarifying those unchangeable truths of the Catholic faith, [3] but rather dealt with theological conclusions which on a number of issues were contrary to the Church teaching or at least ambiguous enough to encourage a non Catholic interpretation. As Cardinal Suenens explains “one could make an astonishing list for propositions taught yesterday, and the day before in Rome, as the only acceptable ones, and which were eliminated by the Conciliar Fathers”[4]

“If the Church were not divine, this council would have buried it.”
-Cardinal Siri-

The school teaches Pythagoras’ theorem in maths lessons. It also decides that all pupils must wear grey trousers.
The first teaching is infallible. The second will certainly change in two hundred years’ time. However it is still binding on pupils for the time being, it might even be of greater practical impact.

You are missing the point:

Bishop Butler of England publicly stated that Vatican II was in no way infallible:

“Not all teachings emanating from a pope or Ecumenical Council are infallible. There is no single proposition of Vatican II – except where it is citing previous infallible definitions – which is in itself infallible.” (The Tablet 26/11/1967)

The same was affirmed by Bishop Rudolf Graber who wrote in his book:

“Since the Council was aiming primarily at a pastoral orientation and hence refrained from making dogmatically binding statements or disassociating itself, as previous Church assemblies have done, from errors and false doctrines by means of clear anathemas, many questions took on an opalescent ambivalence which provided a certain amount of justification for those who speak of the spirit of the Council.” (Athanasius and the Church of Our Times, 1974)

It must not be mistaken that since the council was attended and called by the Pope that it would automatically be lead by the Holy Ghost or that it automatically is guaranteed to be infallibility of the Ordinary Universal Magisterium since only the definitions and condemnations of an ecumenical council are guaranteed by infallibility and not (necessarily) its pastoral exhortations, the Church does not hold as infallible in a council whatever is outside the solemn teachings. [5]

Many erroneously hold the idea that convocation of a Council is somewhat automatically a sign that it’s inspired by “the Holy Spirit” when in reality it is quite the contrary for “to call a council is a practical decision of the Pope. A person may piously believe that God inspired it. But no one can say that this is an object of faith.” [6] Catholics may rather affirm with Cardinal Manning that “to convoke a General Council, except when absolutely demanded by necessity, is to tempt God”[7]

Dear Genesis315,

I don’t see Unitatis Redintegratio on that list. Have you read that document as well?


I think that many actually have followed these documents…that is the problem. Do you agree that non-catholic sects are a means of salvation?


For conservative Traditional Catholics, Vatican II was an absolute disaster. It teachings contradict the traditional teachings of the Church as well as the doctrines of previous Popes.

For liberal Catholics, Vatican II was a tremendous success. As Pope Paul VI said, “ If the world changes, should not religion also change?” That is what Vatican II did. It changed the Church. It made the Church more in tune with “modern man”.

The most accurate book ever written on Vatican II was, “ The Rhine flows into the Tiber “ by Father Ralph Wiltgen. This book contains Personal interviews and statements from press conferences that were made by the Priests, Bishops and Cardinals present at the Council. This book is not a revision of history. It was not written some 20 years later. It was written at the time of the Council and is an accurate account of what actually happened on the Council floor.

From the Book “The Rhine flows into the Tiber” pg 18; The six European countries, which formed an alliance in fact, if not in name, **found additional liberal-minded candidates **among the cardinals, archbishops and bishops of other countries.”

Page 51: “**The liberals had won the election encounter; they had won the debate on liturgy; **and now they had won the debate on revelation. They became increasingly conscious of the strength of their numbers.”

Page 128: “The aim was to increase the** number of liberal members on each commission**. The European alliance by this time had full control of the council majority”

The documents on Ecumenism, Religious Liberty, and relations with Non-Christian religions are ideas that only a liberal could embrace

That might be a good example. Grey does have a continuum of shades as did some of the documents of Vatican II. :slight_smile:

Sounds like a stacked-deck to me.

So why did they spend all that money in convening a council (and it WAS a lot of money!) when the Pope could have just as easily wrote a few encyclicals to produce the same “disciplinary” effects??


Maybe it’s me but, after having read the documents from Vatican II, I’ve been at a loss as to how the changes to the Mass resulted from it, aside from NO of course. I don’t have a problem with the Mass being said in the vernacular. I do have a problem with many of the changes which seem to have resulted from a very loose interpretation of Vatican II, i.e. “spirit of Vatican II.” In another thread, someone gave examples of things that had taken place during the “new” Masses. I promise that some of the things he mentioned are true. Specifically, I was at the Mass when our pastor drove the Volkswagon bus into the Church. That was back in the early 70’s. I still haven’t figured out how that act was representative of the resurrection of Christ. I can say unequivocally that the result of that action and several others did not produce unity in our parish. And, anyone who questioned that decision was accused of being spiritually dead. Rough times in our parish, those. Altar crucifix covered with felt banners. Beautiful, scriptural hymns replaced with secular pop music. Cut down on the time it takes to receive Communion. Holy cow, I’d wait all day for the Body of Christ. Was this stuff supposed to make Mass more accessible to the masses? More understandable? I was seven years old and I could understand the Latin Mass. I knew what was going on. I recognized the solemnity. Anyone who had been properly catechised could. And, that, I believe, is the responsibility of the individual or the individual’s parents, whatever the case may be.

Aside from creating much confusion and division, I’m still not sure what to think of Vatican II. I don’t think this was the intent of the Council. Too much ambiguity? Left the doors wide open to interpretation.

The problem was not with Vatican II or the outcome (Marcel Lefebvre himself signed the Vatican II documents) but with what the “progressives” who thought at that time that Vatican II “did not go far enough” did.

If you read the Vatican II documents yourselves you will see that Vatican II did not order the changes we saw happen in the 1970’s- in fact, Gregorian Chant and Latin was to remain part of the Liturgy- and in no way did the Council call for removal of communion rails, standing for holy communion, communion in the hand or even a Novus Ordo Missae to replace the Roman Liturgy.



The documents of Vatican II were largely written by the “progressives” and they did exactly what they said they would do…read the decree on ecumenism, Unitatis Redintegratio, and you’ll see exactly where the false ecumenism is coming from today.



The choices offered were to limited to be meaningful/

I believe that Vatican II was a disaster for the Church. Look at the state of the Church today. Forty years of Modernism and novelties have driven away millions of Catholics.

I suppose that my opinion doesn’t count for much, but who can dispute the lack of church attendance, lack of faith on the part of Church leaders, failure to discipline outright heretics, and the overemphasis on Social Justice to the detriment of doctrine?

Can anyone say that the Church is stronger today?

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